He was acquired before the start of the 1958 season, and part of the cost was trading the popular Minnie Miñoso, so pitcher Early Wynn didn’t start out on the right side of things with a lot of Sox fans. Compounding the issue was a mediocre season.
In 1959, however, Wynn turned back the clock, leading the major leagues with 22 wins with a 3.17 ERA. That won him the Cy Young, with 13 of the 16 votes. This was a time when only one award was given to the best pitcher in baseball, as opposed to today when the award is given to a pitcher from each league.
Sam Jones of the Giants got two votes, with Bob Shaw of the White Sox getting the final one. Wynn also led the league in starts, innings pitched and batters faced.
White Sox manager Jeff Torborg was named the Manager of the Year by the Baseball Writers Association of America after guiding the team to a record of 94-68.
The Sox shocked the baseball world after being picked to finish no higher than fourth place. Instead, they challenged the eventual A.L. champion Oakland A’s into September and were the only club in the league to have won the season series from them. Only the A’s and the Pittsburgh Pirates had better records during the season than the White Sox. Torborg got 23 of 28 first place votes, for 128 points. Oakland’s Tony La Russa, the former Sox skipper, picked up the other four first-place votes and finished up with 72 points. Joe Morgan of the Red Sox got the final first place vote, finishing third with 28 points.